Becky & Joe, Aardman, Psyop and more create models of children’s imaginary friends for V&A Museum of Childhood show

For a new exhibition, the V&A Museum of Childhood in London has worked with ad agency AMV BBDO to bring to life a set of imaginary friends, with help from some of the UK’s finest modelmakers…

The project was sparked by a workshop held last year where over 60 kids were asked to describe and draw their imaginary friend in as much detail as possible. The resulting creatures include an eight-foot tall dinosaur, a bespectacled fox, a four-legged monster, and Chloe, a three-eyed girl, who is accompanied by her pet cloud. AMV BBDO then brought in a series of animation production companies to turn the drawings into 3D models.

Becky & Joe were a natural fit to bring to life Chloe, with the finished model looking as if she would be quite at home within their online film series Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared. “This was a really fun project to be involved in and it’s such a great idea,” say the duo. “Hopefully bringing the imaginary friends to life won’t give the children nightmares … we’re not sure we would want to hang out with Chloe ourselves!”

Shown below are some of the original drawings of the imaginary friends, alongside photographs of them as models, shot with their ‘owners’ by Rankin.

Nessi by Julio Sanz, shown top in model form, created by Psyop. All photos by Rankin
Nessi by Julio Sanz; shown top in model form, created by Psyop. All photos by Rankin

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Chloe by Mabel Brim; model by Becky & Joe, Blinkink
Chloe by Mabel Brim; model by Becky & Joe, Blinkink

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Jamie the fox by Lily Whitby; model by dwarf
Jamie the fox by Lily Whitby; model by dwarf

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Lily the cat by Ruth Fekade; model by Psyop
Lily the cat by Ruth Fekade; model by Psyop

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Monster by Leo Georgiou; model by Aardman
Monster, the imaginary friend of Leo Georgiou; model by Aardman

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Swerl the Lion by Eva Wood; model by Picasso
Swerl the Lion by Eva Wood; model by Picasso

There is also a rather lovely set of posters created by AMV BBDO and illustrator Mario Kerkstra to promote the exhibition, a selection of which can be seen below.

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‘The Imaginary Friend Collection’ is on at the V&A Museum of Childhood until February 12. More info is at vam.ac.uk/moc/

Credits:
Agency: AMV BBDO
Creative directors: Mike Sutherland, Antony Nelson
Creatives: Amar Marwaha, Arvid Harnqvist
Production companies: Aardman, Psyop, Blinkink, dwarf, Picasso Pictures, Rankin
Poster design and illustration: Mario Kerkstra

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